Jeff Tallon PhD, DSc, CNZM, FRSNZ, HonFIPENZ is Professor of Physics in the Robinson Research Institute at Victoria University of Wellington. He is internationally known for his research and discoveries in high-temperature superconductors (HTS). These are oxide ceramic materials which become perfect conductors when suitably cooled and are currently being developed for applications across all sectors – health, transport, energy, mining and minerals processing, telecommunications, information technology and the research sector.
Jeff has received many awards for his work, including the Rutherford Medal and the Inaugural N.Z. Prime Minister’s Medal for commercializing fundamental science. He is a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit and has been a Visiting Fellow at Trinity College Cambridge and in recent years Visiting Professor at Cambridge University. Jeff has been active for many years in the promotion of Christianity in the context of scientific thinking and advancing the rational basis of Christian faith. He frequently writes articles for the New Zealand Herald on science and the Christian response to issues of the day.
Description: The topic “Astronomy and the Bible” will probably bring to mind the star of Bethlehem and perhaps little else. However, because the ancient Hebrews used a lunar/solar calendar, every date mentioned in the Bible presents a little astronomical puzzle to convert to our modern Gregorian calendar. However, when this is done there are many remarkable surprises which confirm the Bible as an accurate historical record, and some time periods (such as the 70-years captivity) are found to be completed precisely to the very day. It is also little known that the Jewish temple had the 12 constellations marked out on its floor and each was assigned to one of the 12 tribes of Israel. There are also several places where comets or eclipses play an important role, including examples from the Babylonian astronomical diaries which reinforce the precise accuracy of biblical dates. This talk will elaborate these ideas using astronomical simulations and hopefully renew confidence in biblical historicity and reliability.